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About John Hopton

John is a freelance writer from the UK, currently living in Japan and thoroughly enjoying their food and whiskey. His first novel, Three Little Boys, and his travel book, Following Football, are currently available on Amazon.com.

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Here are my most recent posts:

Modern life is like being 16 all the time

Mar 23, 15 Modern life is like being 16 all the time

Posted by in Juxtaposed In Japan, Technology

There was a time, not too long ago, when offering your opinion in any sort of public forum was rare. Now, anyone can do it at any time, and we do it all the time. But what is worrying is how commonly the reaction to them, from other, random members of the public, sounds like the work of a seriously troubled youth.

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“Have an affair” sites may be illegal in France

I am always a little surprised when I see ads for Ashley Madison, the dating site that helps married people to cheat. They make no secret of their aim, either, with their slogan: "Life is short. Have an affair." I don't really know why I am surprised, since adultery is not illegal, and there is plenty else happening online which is even more morally ambiguous.

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Goodbye, Terry Pratchett

The fantasy author Terry Pratchett died this past week, and the considerable public sadness reminded us that, while genuinely famous (he sold more than 85 million books in 37 languages and was the UK's best-selling author of the 1990s), Pratchett enriched the lives of devoted fans in ways that most bestsellers never do.

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Talking Japanese pillow girlfriend is sexy AND moody

Mar 10, 15 Talking Japanese pillow girlfriend is sexy AND moody

Posted by in Juxtaposed In Japan, Technology

More and more Japanese men are turning to virtual reality lovers and partners rather than living, breathing ones, and manufacturers are eager to keep up with demand. The latest attempt to keep lonely men company is a sexy, talking pillow girlfriend.

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Animals are kinkier than we thought

Feb 23, 15 Animals are kinkier than we thought

Posted by in Juxtaposed In Japan, Science

Anyone who has ever watched a wildlife documentary could be forgiven for thinking that sex in the animal kingdom is a functional, no-nonsense business. But actually, there is plenty of kinky stuff going on too, and some of it would put even the filthiest of humans to shame.

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Chocolate anuses and more – The weirder side of Valentine’s Day

Feb 13, 15 Chocolate anuses and more – The weirder side of Valentine’s Day

Posted by in Lifestyle, Seasonal, WTF???

It may not be the perfect Valentine’s idea for finally making a move on that secret crush at the office, but people who know that their partners like a bit of kink – actually, a lot of kink – might currently be awaiting a bronze cast of their butthole through the mail. Whatever their date’s reaction may be, they could never say they didn’t try something different.

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Unromantic Japanese men need “Love Your Wife Day”

To hear some observers speak on the subject of romance in Japan - observers ranging from Westerners in a bar to expert Japanologists - you could be forgiven for thinking that romantic love is something that only really exists to make TV dramas better and to sell products through advertising.

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Are we meant to be monogamous?

Jan 21, 15 Are we meant to be monogamous?

Posted by in Juxtaposed In Japan, Science

Are we meant to be monogamous? In December, a controversial article suggested that great swathes of males are giving up on women and retreating into a world of video games, chemical addiction and pornography, because public scrutiny of men has left the gender fearful and unskilled when it comes to relationships. Accurate or not, it sounds pretty similar to what's happening in Japan.

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Cool body-swap tech has ethical benefits

A body-swap – living in somebody else’s skin. It is a staple of science fiction, but now it transpires that it is actually relatively easy to give people the experience of being in another person’s body.

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Japan’s deadly New Year delicacy

New Year is the biggest and most important holiday in Japan, and various traditional foods are integral to the celebrations. Only one of them, though, takes the lives of several people almost every year, with nine being the sad total at the start of 2015. Poisonous puffer fish? Scorpion sashimi? Strangely, it is a small, simple rice cake that is so deadly.

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